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Taxes, fees, leases, and operating hours

Information about government tax and fee relief, assistance for commercial rents and amendments to operating hours for some businesses.

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Fee and licence relief

The NSW Government is waiving a range of licence and permit fees for businesses for 12 months.

Tax assistance

The tax-free threshold for payroll tax will increase from $900,000 to $1 million for the financial year commencing on 1 July 2020.

For businesses with payrolls of $10 million or lower:

  • Annual tax liability reduced by 25% when these businesses lodge their annual reconciliation, which is due on 28 July.
  • Can opt to defer payroll tax payment for 6 months.

Businesses with payrolls over $10 million can opt to defer payroll tax payment for 6 months

See more information at Revenue NSW.

Clubs and hotels will have their gaming machine tax payments deferred from March 2020 until 1 September 2020.  

Lotteries and Keno payments will be deferred from 1 April 2020 to 30 September 2020. 

Parking space levy payments will be deferred until 30 September 2020. 

The Australian Government's instant asset write-off threshold is increased from $30,000 to $150,000.

It now includes businesses with aggregated annual turnover of less than $500 million (up from $50 million) until 30 June 2020.

Check instant asset write off eligibility

The Australian Government's Backing Business Incentives program provides a 50% deduction on the cost of an eligible asset on installation.

  • Available to businesses with an aggregated turnover below $500 million.
  • Existing depreciation rules apply to the balance of the asset's cost.

Check eligibility for asset depreciation

Commercial tenancies

Commercial tenants with fewer than 20 employees and not-for-profits in all NSW Government properties will have their rents deferred for 6 months.

The NSW Government has enabled a range of measures to help commercial tenants if they are in financial distress due to COVID-19. 

This will help businesses such as:

  • shops
  • cafes
  • gyms
  • hairdressers
  • restaurants
  • offices
  • warehouses
  • industrial sites.

Key measures included in this package:

  • landlords must negotiate rent relief agreements with tenants in financial distress due to COVID-19.
  • a ban on the termination of a lease for non-payment of rent.
  • a freeze in rent increases.

Find more information on rent relief arrangements.

Business owners who are having difficulty meeting rental repayments due to COVID-19, may be able to request a rent reduction from your landlord. Find eligibility criteria, step-by-step instructions on how to negotiate a new rent agreement, and where to find mediation support

Retail or other commercial property owners may have tenants requesting rental relief due to COVID-19. Find information on negotiating new rental terms.

Eligible landlords with tenants suffering financial distress as a result of COVID-19 can apply for a reduction of up to 25% of the land tax payable on a parcel of land in the 2020 land tax year. 

To be eligible, you need to be leasing property on your parcel of land to: 

  • a commercial tenant who has an annual turnover of less than $50 million AND lost 30% or more of turnover due to COVID-19
  • a residential tenant who has lost 25% or more of household income due to COVID-19.

Apply for land tax relief.

School businesses' lease and licence fees waived

Lease and licence fees have been waived up to the end of term 2 for small community businesses that use school sites, such as:

  • canteens
  • uniforms shops 
  • out of school hours care services 
  • dance schools.

These arrangements have been backdated to the end of March.

Opening hours changes

Businesses such as supermarkets and pharmacies are now able to operate 24 hours a day to meet the needs of customers. 

A range of industries, including construction sites, can operate on weekends and public holidays during the COVID-19 crisis.

Financially distressed businesses

To provide flexibility for your business during the COVID-19 (coronavirus) outbreak, the Australian Government has temporarily altered some creditor thresholds and regulation around trading while insolvent.

For more information on these changes visit the Australian Government Treasury website.

Last updated 8 May 2020

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